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Black Tetra (Gymnocorymbus Ternetzi)

Photo of: Black Tetra (Gymnocorymbus Ternetzi)

Scientific Name(s): Gymnocorymbus ternetzi


Common Name(s): Black Tetra, Skirt Tetra, Black Skirt Tetra, Black Widow Tetra


Family: Characidae


Species Type: Characins (Tetras)


Maximum Size: 2.5 inches


Life Span: 5 years


Natural Habitat: South American rivers


Minimum Tank Size: 20 gallons


Tank Region: Middle area of tank


Possible Tank Mates: Other community fish


Description: This fish is somewhat oval-shape. Young are more attractive than adults. The main body color is dark gray to black while the fins are black. Older fishes’ colors fade and their fins and body color become smoky gray. Two black bands extend vertically; one just behind the gill cover and the other in its midsection.


Temperature Range: 67°F - 83°F



pH Range: 6 - 8

pH 5.0
pH 6.0
pH 7.0
pH 8.0
pH 9.0


Hardness Range: 5° - 19°



Breeding Information: This fish is easiest to breed in a breeding tank with marbles as a substrate or a mesh netting for the eggs to fall out of reach of the cannibalistic parents. Use warm water (84-86°F) to initiate spawning. After courting procedure of the male swimming around females with fins spread, many tiny transparent eggs that fall to the bottom. Parents must be removed or eggs will be eaten. The eggs hatch in 24-28 hours and the fry are free-swimming after 3 to 5 days after. Start feeding with small live and crushed flake foods.


Sexing Information: The female Black Widow's anal fin is narrower and runs parallel with its second vertical line.


Diet: Carnivorous but does well with flake food.


Temperament: Schooling; Peaceful, although somewhat nippy when kept in smaller schools. Excellent for community tanks.


Common Diseases: Ich


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Characins (Tetras)


Keith Pardee

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